Windham gymnasts a diverse team with tons of heart
By Melanie Savage
Windham - posted Tue., Feb. 1, 2011
WINDHAM - The Windham High School gymnastics team came into a meet against the Killingly/Woodstock Academy team with an 0-4 record. And, with the other team outnumbering them by at least three to one, it didn’t look like Windham would be logging their first win on Jan. 31.
All-around freshman Rebecca Hinckley and sophomore Rebecca Arkin were both out with injuries. “They take the top four scores in each event,” said head coach Melanie Godbout. “I don’t even have four girls to put up in some events.”
And many of the girls from the Killingly/Woodstock team are year-round gymnasts who compete on private club teams as well. “Most of my kids are very much involved in the school,” said Godbout. “Half are in the drama club, they all do other sports. We’re a high school team. It’s becoming more and more difficult to compete with the privatization of gymnastics.”
But that didn’t stop the Windham gymnasts from having a good time at the meet. When they weren’t competing, the group sat shoulder-to-shoulder, chatting and clearly enjoying one another’s company.
“It’s a diverse group of kids,” said Godbout. “It’s a really neat dynamic. In that way, I think the team reflects the dynamic of the school.”
See schedule at www.casciac.org.
Brighid DeAngelis- Encouraged by her teammate Caithlyn Sanchez, sophomore DeAngelis joined the gymnastics team her freshman year, never having done the sport before. “Practice is hard, but fun. It’s the sort of team I want to be a part of,” she said.
Caithlyn Sanchez- Senior and team captain Caithlyn Sanchez is something of a Renaissance woman. She is the top-rated student academically in her class, and will most likely serve as class Valedictorian. She is involved in the school’s drama program, as well as participating in gymnastics and volleyball for Windham. She also practices Karate year-round. Caithlyn said she enjoys the balance beam for the challenge it presents. “You have such a limited amount of space to perform the moves,” she said. Caithlyn plans to study nursing in the fall. “Maybe at UConn,” she said.
Windham Gymnasticsb Coach Melanie Godbout.
Sixth year as head coach.
Melanie Godbout is an English teacher at Windham, and shares a very close relationship with her gymnasts. She said the athletics community in general at Windham is very close. “We’re all teachers here,” said Godbout. Add to that the limited resources that sports must share at the school, and “we’re a very tight-knit group,” said Godbout.